Pastor Jarrid Wilson remembered at Wheaton Mental Health Summit
Matthias Browning

Matthias Browning

The recent Wheaton Mental Health Summit has paused to remember the young pastor who took his own life just a few months ago.

Jarrid Wilson committed suicide just hours after appearing relaxed and happy at his son’s baseball training. His death was also on the eve of World Suicide Prevention Day.

Jarrid was also on staff at Greg Laurie’s Harvest Christian Fellowship in Riverdale, California.

At the time, his wife posted a video of Jarrid at baseball just four hours before he took his life.

Jarrid was also the founder of a non-profit called Anthem of Hope, specifically set up to help those facing depression and suicidal thoughts.

It is reported that the day Jarrid died was the day the organizers began planning this conference.

The Billy Graham Center at Wheaton College partnered with the Wheaton College School of Psychology, Counseling, and Family Therapy to host a GC2 Summit on Facing Hard Truths & Challenges in Pastoral Ministry. The one-day evangelical conversation was held last Friday, December 6.

“The stats about pastors are telling: 84 percent say they’re on call 24 hours a day, 54 percent find the role of pastor frequently overwhelming, and 48 percent often feel the demands of ministry are more than they can handle (Lifeway Research),” stated the conference’s organizers.

“We have a crisis in church leadership on our hands, and as a leading voice in church leadership, evangelism, and mission, we will address issues of leadership, burnout, and mental health.”

“Too many pastors and church leaders are struggling in multiple ways, and it seems that the demands today continue to outpace the self-care and resources we have available to lead from a place of health and wholeness,” said Dr. Ed Stetzer, Executive Director of the Billy Graham Center. “Many are balancing on the edge of burnout and this is not okay.”

“This is a global problem, also impacting pastors and leaders inside the church. We must face it head on as the body of Christ,” said Rick Warren, Senior Pastor of Saddleback Church in Lake Forest, CA. After battling depression, Warren’s son, Matthew, died at the age of 23 after taking his own life.

Meanwhile, Jarrid Wilson’s family struggle to get on with life without a husband, father and guiding hand for the family. She recently posted on Instagram, “This is the last photo Jarrid and I ever took together, about 5 hours before he passed away. We were watching our oldest son at his first baseball practice.

“Today, I took Finch to his last game of the season.

“I can’t lie, it has been so hard to walk on that field alone every Saturday morning.”